BSB 806 015

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BSB 806 015

Compare the best savings accounts

Comparing savings accounts is a great option to ensure you can kick start your savings goals in the right way.

Whether you’re saving for your next holiday, to buy your first home, or building up an emergency fund for unexpected expenses, it’s important to make sure you have the best savings account to help you reach your financial goal faster.  Since there are a wide range of savings account types - all with their own unique benefits and disadvantages - having the right type can make a huge difference for working towards your savings goals.

It’s important that you understand how you intend to use your savings account so that you can make the best decision. Here are some things to think about as you compare savings accounts:

How much money do you plan to start with?

Before you open a savings account, you should consider how much you intend on depositing to start with. Many savings accounts require you to have a minimum balance to earn interest or avoid monthly service fees. Always compare interest rates as you review your choices to make sure you get the best account for your needs.

Will you make regular deposits?

Many savings accounts offer higher interest rates or other perks if you make regular deposits, and in some instances the higher bonus rate is only valid if no withdrawals are made within a certain time frame (e.g. each month). For some people, this can be an excellent incentive to keep you on track for bigger savings.

Do you intend to withdraw money from your account occasionally?

Some savings accounts charge interest or other penalties if you make a given number of withdrawals. Some accounts allow no withdrawals at all for a given term. If you have difficulty hanging on to your savings, such a policy can provide an added incentive to keep your money in the bank. Be sure you ask your bank to clarify its policy on withdrawals before you open your account.

Are your savings goals short-term or long-term?

Many savings accounts offer higher introductory rates. These rates are an excellent way to save money in the short term, and they can even help you build up interest more quickly on your long-term savings. If you do have long-term goals, be sure to take into consideration the interest rate after the introductory rate expires. This way you can gain a better understanding of the way in which your savings will grow over time, and make decisions on what to do with the funds after.

Guaranteed vs variable interest rates

Term deposit savings accounts give you a locked-in interest rate over a specified period. That rate will not vary for the set term, no matter how often interest rates can change. If you don’t mind a little uncertainty, and the current rate is higher, you might opt for a savings account with a variable interest rate, where the rate may rise or fall depending on the market.

Take advantage of compounding interest rates

Savings accounts vary on how many times they pay interest into your account throughout the year. All other factors being equal, it pays to choose the account that pays interest the most often. Every time the bank pays interest into your account, that extra amount earns interest, too. Over time - and with the discipline to deposit and not to withdraw - such an account can amass quite a tidy sum.

No matter what you're looking to save money for, it's worth comparing your choices to find an account that best suits your needs. Here’s a quick guide to help you compare the various types of savings accounts you can open:

A quick guide to savings accounts

  • Personal savings accounts: A personal savings account is an excellent option to stash spare money, such as bonuses, gifts, and other windfalls. Some personal savings accounts provide bonus rates if you deposit a given amount of money every month without withdrawals. Such an account serves as a great motivator. P&N’s SwiftSaver account does just that, motivating members to save money towards their goals - such as a deposit on a new home or a holiday. To that end, this account rewards people who deposit funds each month and make no withdrawals with a variable bonus interest rate.
  • Children’s savings account: Banks love to encourage good financial habits from childhood onwards. Most banks offer special savings accounts for children under a certain age. These accounts usually require no minimum account balance and incur no maintenance fees, making them a great place for your child to stash his or her pocket money from their chores. P&N’s Way Cool Saver account offers kids from 0 to 15 the ability to start a savings account without account fees and no minimum monthly deposit required to earn interest. This account motivates children to keep their savings in the bank with limited transaction fees.
  • High-interest savings account: These accounts maximise your interest with a competitive rate. Usually, these accounts are fee-free but require a minimum deposit and have penalties for withdrawals. P&N’s Hi Saver account provides customers who maintain at least a $5,000 balance with a high variable bonus interest rate for the first four months on top of the standard variable rate. Customers may only hold one single and one joint Hi Saver account.
  • Joint savings account: Most commonly opened by couples, these accounts allow both people equal access to the account.
  • Term deposit savings account: These accounts require you to deposit your money for a given period. P&N Bank’s term deposit accounts offer a guaranteed rate of return with a wide range of terms at competitive rates. Account holders can choose if they want their interest paid when the account matures (the Money Maker Term Deposit) or prefer that the bank deposit their interest monthly, quarterly, or annually (the Regular Income Term Deposit).
  • Retirement savings account: These accounts are available for people over 55 years of age. P&N’s & Retirement account offers seniors a high variable interest rate as well as the ability to conduct transactions.

When you compare savings accounts to find the best account for your needs, you are more likely to achieve your savings goals. For assistance in finding the right savings accounts for you and your family, speak with a P&N Bank team member today.

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